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Useless Man


Useless Man is a collection of over 100 art works made by award-winning artist James Hale during his two months in RESIDENCE.

The exhibition will explore a multitude of things: love, death, Footscray, sex, drag queens, Seddon, art, camp, gossip, and Yarraville – inspired in theme and title by queer icon Leigh Bowery. A sequinned, supernova from Sunshine, elements of Bowery’s life and art, both oblique and blatant, run throughout this exhibition.

Useless Man sees Hale’s creative process laid bare – showing several versions of a singular work throughout its development. A picture’s meaning can change dramatically with the addition or subtraction of a word. Even a change of composition can “fix” a lacklustre drawing. This exhibition exposes the process behind a finished artwork, mistakes and all.

Join us on the opening night for after-hours gallery access and bar facilities. While you’re there, make sure you pop by neighbouring exhibition Tender gestures, loud voices, exhibiting in FCAC’s Roslyn Smorgon Gallery.

WHEN: Opening Night – Wednesday 7 July, 6.30-8.30pm (RSVP required)
Exhibition – 8 July – 5 August
WHERE: FCAC – Entrance Gallery
OPENING HOURS: Monday to Friday: 9.30am – 5:00pm
Saturday and Sunday: 10am – 4pm
COST: Free

Find out more about COVID Safety at FCAC. 



James Hale is a queer artist living and working in Melbourne. He makes colourful oil paintings and austere drawings on cardboard. These works can be sad, bitchy, sexy, devastating, offensive, funny, bitter, fatalistic, inscrutable, sensitive, stupid, or profound. His practice is rooted in the tradition of other queer artists that utilise text like Rene Ricard, David McDiarmid, Tracey Emin, A.L. Stiener, and David Robilliard. 

Images courtesy of James Hale.

Date & Times


Opening Night: Wednesday 7 July, 6.30-8.30pm
Exhibition: 8 July – 5 Aug


Footscray Community Arts Centre



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